A Thanksgiving Prayer For The Agnostic

I love Thanksgiving, and family meals in general, but I’ve discovered that the pre-meal moment reserved in many homes for prayer is an awkward time for me. Raised by Christian parents, prayer was a habit prior to every meal – rote in nature. Since I left religion many years ago, I’ve always wanted an alternative to this pre-meal routine but had not yet succeeded in finding it.

My son remarked the other day that he realized why people pray before meals. “It brings people together in a calm, happy and thankful state of mind.” (Good for the body, good for the mind!)

I wholeheartedly agree, but prayer is so tied in with specific ideologies about the word God that I don’t like to use it.

In lieu of a God-centered prayer, here is a meditation of thanks for this Thanksgiving.

Let our hearts be filled with kindness,

Our minds be calm and light

May thanks arise within us

For all we share tonight.

Happy Thanksgiving.